Not a Cloudflare user, so not sure if this is a right place to share this issue.
A number of Armenian news outlets’ RSS feeds  are giving HTTP Error 403 in Newsblur and Inoreader for a two month now, though working fine in Feedly. I think this happens because Cloudflare blocks the requests due to more strict security precautions taken by media in September amid increased cyberattacks.
I’ve counted 5 websites so far, and was able to contact one of them to whitelist Newsblur, but there might be more. I was wondering is there a way to fix this issue?
Cloudflare doesn’t censor content. A 403 is generally due to security settings under the control of site owners.
Cloudflare does not generate any 4xx errors, so this would indicate something is not configured correctly with your hosting provider or your client is sending something incorrect. When this happens, in your browser you’ll see the message “Error 403: Forbidden”. If you’ve recently upgraded from a Free account to a Pro subscription; the 403 error may be a temporary error related to an issue while replacing the certificate from the Free account with a certificate for the Pro account. If not:
- Try using a different browser, or use a private/incognito window. Your DNS cache may be pointing to the origin server.
- If you’re only seeing the error from certain countries. Check the origin server configuration for a country block.
Other successful troubleshooting suggestions can be found in this Community Tip. Let us know if you continue to see issues after trying these tips, we’re happy to help further.
Thank you for detailed answer.
The problem is that the feeds are directly accessible from browser (ie my browser loads the xml file just fine) The error occurs though when Newsblur or Inoreader crawler is trying to fetch the feeds (not affiliated with any of them). Considering that Feedly fetches the feeds without problem my best guess is that
a) either Cloudflare blocks the requests from Newsblur / Inoreader considering their IP addresses as suspicious,
b) their crawlers are set up somehow wrong as opposed to Feedly’s so they got blocked.
To replicate the issue you can create free account on Newsblur or Inoreader and try fetching the feeds provided in the first post.
Also I would like to note that the one website that unblocked Newsblur did that by removing RSS feed URL from under Cloudflare’s protection (or something like that)
If the site has elevated security settings, the site owner should be able to track down the block. Their Cloudflare account has a Firewall section that would show blocked requests and why there were blocked.
You would need to address this with the site owner(s), as Cloudflare can not override site owner security settings.
Thank you for prompt replies.
And last couple of questions.
Do i get right that there are no know practices / patterns for feed reader services to bypass JS challenge by Cloudlfare in this type of situations? (as i do believe that these services got flagged automatically) And so basically we are stuck with not working RSS feeds with only option being contacting all different outlets and asking them to whitelist these services?
Also is there a guide that explains the nuances of how to set up the cloudflare protection as not to disrupt RSS and other this type of things?
If they’ve enabled JS Challenge that interfere with their RSS Feeds, they’ve shot themselves in the foot. They need to create a bypass for this.
Thanks for help and all the patience.
This topic was automatically closed 24 hours after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.